Monday, January 12, 2015

Traveling the Keys

January 5-12

Days 55-62

We have spent this week making our way up the Keys toward Miami.  Our first night out we dropped anchor in Tarpon Belly Key.  Took the dink for a nice ride around the island, but the shoreline was so rough that we decided not beach it.  The wind came up during the night, pushing us a little too close to the shore. The low tide caused us to have to hang around a little longer than planned on Tuesday morning.  It did give Jess a chance to clean a few spots on our starboard side, and apply a new coat of wax.  Unfortunately, (only from my point of view), we floated off the bottom before he had a chance to clean and wax the port side.  Not quite sure why, but he never seems to get around to cleaning that side.  If I ever post pictures of Bama Dream you can count on them always being from the starboard side.  When we again had water under our boat we headed for our night's anchorage on Molasses Key, just under the bridge at Marathon. There is a very small beach here, so we were able to go for a nice walk, mostly on top of the exposed old coral bed.  Had fun searching the tidal pools for all sorts of left behind creatures.  Weather reports didn't look good for the next couple of days, so we headed for Long Key hoping for as much protection as possible from the 30+ knot winds that were forecast for Wednesday night and Thursday.  They were right on target with the forecast!  One of our sun pads actually blew off during the night, so before leaving on Friday morning we spent 2 hours in the dink searching the mangroves along the shore.  Success!  On to John Pennekamp State Park to enjoy Key Largo while we wait for a favorable weather window for a trip across the Gulf Stream to the Bahamas.  When we make it to the islands we may be off the grid for awhile.  Will update as often as possible.

 Most people think we are roughing it.  While we were anchored at Tarpon Belly Key we met this group of young people spending a week on these two very small sailboats.  Privacy was not their priority, but they were certainly having a great time!!

Our anchorage at Molasses Key.  Didn't take too long to walk the length of the beach here.  That has been one of our disappointments, mangroves are everywhere, but beaches are actually few and far between in this area of the Keys.

Found this guy hiding out in a tidal pool patiently waiting for high tide.

Beautiful sunrises and sunsets have become common place on this trip.  It doesn't matter how many we have witnessed, I still grab the camera to record each stunning event.  Met someone along our  travels that plans to have a photo project done at the end of their trip just of the amazing sunsets they have experienced along the way.

We shared our bow with this visitor for quite awhile as we made our way through the choppy waters of the Hawk.  Jess enjoyed his company until he realized how much cleanup was going to be required.

 Had a wonderful meal at The Fish House with Mary and Roger from TaTa.  We are making plans to cross over to the Bahamas together when we get a favorable weather window.

Don't know what we would have done without our trusty wagon.  We have made 2 trips to Publix to provision for our trip to the Bahamas. 

Kayakers enjoying a trip through the mangroves at John Pennekamp State Park, as we make our way through the winding canal back to open water.  This is definitely one of those places we would like to come back to.

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